On our first installation of The Extemper’s Wiki (a series where we break down important news in 175 words or less), Ananth Veluvali dives into Canada’s Freedom Convoys.
Since late January, Canada’s capital city—Ottawa—has been the center of sustained protests and blockades by hundreds of Canadian truckers and thousands of pedestrians.
While these protests were originally against Canada’s vaccine mandates for truck drivers, they have since evolved into more general protests against Canada’s COVID-19 mandates.
This isn’t any ordinary protest, either. Already, protestors (collectively, known as the Freedom Convoy) have blocked off important roads and borders, including one responsible for 1/4 of all US-Canadian trade. Large companies like Ford and Toyota have temporarily shut down several factories, and an estimated $300 million in daily economic damage have stemmed from these protests.
Copycat movements have sparked up around the rest of the world, including a “People’s Convoy” in the United States.
The Canadian government has responded aggressively, exercising the Emergencies Act for the first time since 1984. Many truckers’ personal or corporate financial accounts were frozen, and protests were largely shut down by police in riot gear. In fact, this was the biggest police operation in Canadian history.
Canada is in a “Trucky” situation…
Update: on February 23rd, the Canadian government revoked its use of the Emergencies Act.